St Peter's Church, Nottingham

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The Church of St Peter with St James

St Peter's Church Nottingham
Denomination Church of England
Churchmanship Broad Church
Diocese Southwell and Nottingham
Province Province of York
Vicar(s) Rev. Christopher Harrison, Rev. Stephen Morris, Rev. Chrissie Little, Rev. Alison Maddocks
Organist/Director of music Dr Peter Siepmann
Organist(s) Dr Michael Leuty, Lee Rooke
Churchwarden(s) Helena Lord, Keith Mountford

St Peter's Church, Nottingham is an Anglican parish church in the city of Nottingham.

The church is Grade I listed by the Department for Culture, Media & Sport as a building of outstanding architectural or historic interest.[1]

It is part of the parish of All Saints', St Mary's and St Peter's, Nottingham. A map of the parish is available on Google Maps

Formally it is the church of St Peter with St James.


St Peter's is one of the three mediaeval parish churches in Nottingham, the others being St Mary's and St Nicholas'. The parish of St. James' Church, Standard Hill, founded in 1807 was united with St Peter's in 1933 and the official title "St Peter with St James" came into being. (St James's was demolished a few years later; some monuments from St James's are preserved in St Peter's.)

The church shows traces of many stages of construction from about 1180 onwards (the original church of around 1100 was destroyed by fire).

The history of St. Peter's is covered in detail on the Southwell Diocesan Church History Project Website.

List of incumbents[edit]


St Peter's is home to a flourishing musical tradition. The church boasts a new organ, a fine choir, and a popular series of Saturday morning concerts. The Organist & Director of Music since 2007 is Peter Siepmann.


There is a long-standing choral tradition at St Peter's, developed by musicians such as Vincent Trivett (Organist 1906-1947) and Kendrick Partington (Organist 1957-1994). Today, the choir can be heard singing in church every Sunday, as well as in frequent concert performances.

As well as singing at St Peter's throughout the year (and once a month at the sister church of All Saints' Church, Nottingham), the choir often sings in churches and cathedrals across the UK and abroad. The first such visit was to Lichfield Cathedral during Easter Week 1969. Recent visits include those to York Minster, Bath Abbey, and the cathedrals at Winchester, Peterborough, Llandaff and Gloucester. In August 2008, the choir was privileged to be invited to sing the services for several days at Westminster Abbey.

The choir tackles a broad range of repertoire from plainsong and renaissance polyphony to Romantic and contemporary works from across the world. It is an amateur voluntary group that produces what the Nottingham Evening Post has termed an "outstanding standard of music-making" (May 2009), thanks to the extraordinary commitment and hard work of its members.

Further information, including audio and video clips, can be found on the parish website at [1].


St Peter's is an excellent concert venue and its light yet warm acoustic has proved particularly good for chamber music. The principal concert provision at St Peter's is given by the regular series of Saturday morning 'coffee break' concerts. These were started in 1988 by the organist of the time, Kendrick Partington, along with his wife Mary, and have proved a popular attraction ever since.

The hour-long concerts are held at 11am every Saturday during October, February and June, and occasionally at other times during the year. Coffee and biscuits are served from 10.15am. The concerts are given by a broad range of performers that include local musicians, young professionals, university students, choirs, chamber orchestras, brass bands, and more. The very pleasant Schimmel baby grand piano, kindly on 'permanent loan' to the church by a member of the congregation, is often heard at the concerts. A wide range of repertoire is presented to audiences that usually number between one and two hundred. The church is proud to provide the concerts free of charge, though donations to the church music fund are invited at the door.

The church also occasionally hosts more formal evening performances, for which there is an admission charge made to the audience. More information about all the concerts at St Peter's, including photographs and examples of past programmes, can be found on the parish website at [2].


The first organ since the Commonwealth period was installed by Lincoln in 1812. This was enlarged by Lloyd and Dudgeon in 1863[2] and has been adapted and restored several times since by E. Wragg & Son, Henry Willis & Sons and Hill, Norman & Beard. In 1952, much of the organ of St Columba, Mansfield Road was incorporated into the St Peter's instrument.

The organ, having proved problematic for sometime, was described as unusable on Remembrance Sunday 2007. A new organ was installed in December 2010 (heard for the first time on Christmas Eve), and is said to be the largest combination pipe/digital organ in the UK, combining some ranks of new and re-used pipes with digital simulations of most stops. The organ is situated in the North-East corner of the church, with the Great and much of the Pedal organ speaking into the Nave from behind the historic eighteenth century case, the Choir organ speaking from a newly constructed case on the chancel balcony, and the Swell and some of the Pedal division speaking from within the resonance of the organ chamber. The organ has been designed as a recital instrument, and to provide support for congregational singing, as well as accompanying the church's choir. More information about the instrument, including the thinking behind its installation, and historical information about the old organ, is available on the parish website at [3].


There are notes of payments to organists in the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries

  • 1481-1482 And for 5s paid to the organist (lusori ad organa) in the aforesaid Church in this year.[3]
  • 1516/17 - 1517/18 And for 6s 11d paid to Robert Dowse, organist, at the request of the greater part of the parishioners, in augmentation of his salary.[4]
  • On 25 October 1785, William Bradley was allowed one guinea for teaching the boys to sing.
  • Organist paid £12/12 in 1816 but cost was not borne by the church.
  • Miss King - 1818 - 1825 - ?
  • Miss Price c.1834
  • William Archer c.1834
  • Mrs Cooper c.1840
  • Mr. Woolley c.1844
  • Mr. Webb ca. 1848[5]
  • Miss Webb 1848 - 1850[6] (afterwards organist of the parish church, Cheadle)
  • R.G. Parr - 1854 - 1858 - ?
  • W. Selby c.1862
  • T.L. Selby c.1864
  • W. Selby c.1866 - 1883[7]
  • C. Rogers c. 1893[8]
  • Lawrence J Norman ca 1901
  • Vincent W. Trivett 1906 - 1947 (formerly Lady Bay Church West Bridgford 1901-1906)
  • Harold E F Bebbington 1947 - 1952
  • Cyril Whitehead 1952 - 1953
  • Douglas Madden 1953 - 1957
  • Kendrick Partington 1957 - 1994
  • Gary Sieling 1994 - 1995
  • Andrew Teague 1995 - 2003
  • Philip Collin 2003 - 2007
  • Dr Peter Siepmann 2007 -

See also[edit]


  1. ^ English Heritage. "Grade I (458588)". Images of England. 
  2. ^ Nottinghamshire Guardian - Friday 8 May 1863
  3. ^ Thoroton Society Record Series Volume VII (1939). The account books of the Guilds of St. George and St. Mary in the church of St. Peter, Nottingham. R.F.B. Hodgkinson.
  4. ^ Thoroton Society Record Series Volume VII (1939). The account books of the Guilds of St. George and St. Mary in the church of St. Peter, Nottingham. R.F.B. Hodgkinson.
  5. ^ Leicestershire Mercury - Saturday 29 April 1848
  6. ^ Nottinghamshire Guardian - Thursday 26 September 1850
  7. ^ Nottinghamshire Guardian - Friday 28 September 1883
  8. ^ Nottinghamshire Guardian - Saturday 2 December 1893
  • Alfred Stapleton, 1905, Churches and monasteries of old and new Nottingham
  • Keith Train, 1981, Train on churches, Nottingham

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 52°57′8″N 1°8′55″W / 52.95222°N 1.14861°W / 52.95222; -1.14861